Since the creation of the Premier League 29 years ago only nine black managers have led one of its teams from the dugout.

While a quarter of the players in the top flight are Black, Asian or Minority Ethic (BAME), stats show only a fraction progress into coaching and managerial roles in the league.  

Darren Moore, who when he took over at West Bromwich Albion in April 2018 became the first ever Jamaican Premier League manager, is all too aware of this worrying trend and how it continues to influence and restrict the game.

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In an exclusive interview with UCFB, he said: “The game’s in a good place, but mark your cards, it could be in such a better place with the inclusion of more black, minority and ethnic cultures, without a doubt. You’ve got that diversity on the football pitch, but you need to replicate that in the culture and management background.”

At the time of his appointment the club were bottom of the Premier League, but the former Albion defenders’ appointment, initially as caretaker, revitalised the club and gave them hope of staying up. A memorable 1-0 win over Manchester United saw Moore named manager of the month. However, with the damage already done, he was unable to save the Baggies from relegation. 

Moore said: “The hindrance is not talking about it. How much are we losing in the game because of that? Where we’re at now there’s so much being lost in the game that’s waiting to open the door to these multitudes of cultures and managers, to bring a different freshness to the game, ideas, whatever it may be.”

However, Moore, who’s now in his second season as Doncaster Rovers manager, hopes that positive change may be beckoning on the horizon. Due to the Black Lives Matter movement he believes we are starting to witness a shift in attitude towards ethnic minorities, not merely in football, but also in wider society.  

He said: “[The Black Lives Matter movement] has allowed everybody to look within. What I’m certainly hoping from here is that the change is going to come and the change that is happening will be a change where everybody is involved.”

Moore added: “You can only hope that over the weeks and months ahead that the ongoing conversations continue to have a positive impact, not for football as a sole identity, but society as a whole.”